Sherpa Guide found a friend in author Maggie Estep, who followed the New York-bred throughout his 39-race career and claimed him so he would be guaranteed a good retirement home.
Saturday's $250,000 Empire Classic, the marquee race on New York Showcase Day at Belmont Park, is so wide open that Rudina Stable's filly Board Elligible, has a big shot in a field of 15.
Spite the Devil surged past the tiring leaders in the stretch and held off a late charge by Sherpa Guide by a half-length to win the $108,100 Evan Shipman Handicap on closing day of the Belmont spring/summer meeting on Sunday.
Private Emblem comes back to Saratoga where he could be facing as many as 14 other NewYork-breds in Friday's $100,000-added West Point Handicap on the grass at nine furlongs.
Edgar Prado sat chilly aboard Well Fancied for the first two-thirds of the $113,100 Evan Shipman, then pulled away from the field in the homestretch to win the 1 1/16-mile New York-bred stakes race in 1:40 4/5 on closing day Sunday at Belmont Park.
Belmont Park presents its final stakes race of the spring-summer meet Sunday when a deep field of New York-breds contests the $100,000 Evan Shipman Handicap at 1 1/16 miles. Gatsas Stables' Gander is the key attraction in this race and 124-pound highweight.
The $250,000 Empire Classic, the centerpiece of Saturday's New York Showcase Day at Belmont Park, has drawn Grade II winner Gander.
A field of six or seven older horses, including two based locally, are expected to contest Sunday's $350,000 Iselin Handicap (gr. II) at 1 1/8 miles.
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